Frank left a comment on the sunflower bugs post confirming that the plant in question is most likely not a sunflower and the bug in question is most likely an aphid and not a weevil. If you need more detailed pictures for the plant and bugs, try looking at this picture of a bunch of the plants or this picture of the bugs. The quality isn’t spectacular because I reduced the size before uploading them to Picasaweb, but the one captures a few different stages of development. In fact, if you zoom in on the picture, you can see one of them giving birth to a pink little larva thing. Mmmm, yummy. If anybody’s up for the icky cool closeness pictures, I’ll toss the full size guys up seperately.
Anyhow. The aphid theory would also make sense because it would explain this nice little predator ladybug going in for a kill. Ok, it was moving pretty slowly, but it was still predatating…which is probably not a word.
I think we had originally ruled out aphids because my non familiar mind always assumed that you couldn’t really see aphids that well. But a little bit of research tells me that’s obviously not true and that they congregate on plants pretty much the same way that these guys do. My money is starting to sway towards the “large legged potato aphid” described over here by the Minnesota Agriculture Department. The little picture they have isn’t big enough to tell for sure, but it looks damn close.
Another option is this guy, the Rosy Apple Aphid:
I mainly posted that one because it’s a closeup and it’s cool. But yeah, thoughts after seeing these? I might head back down to the quiet little riverwalk and take some better pictures of the plants themselves so that the sunflower theory is squashed forever. I’m going to continue to assume that just because an aphid is named a potato aphid doesn’t mean that it can’t suck the juice out of a few other plants as well….
Oh yeah, and if for some reason you really were looking for DIPHA and knew what it was, you can leave and study the cardiac effects of 3,5-diiodo-4-hydroxyphenylpropionic acid on your own…